(ANS) – Christian Legal Society and Advocates International have applauded a Swedish court’s decision reversing Pastor Ake Green’s hate speech conviction for preaching what he considered to be the biblical view of homosexual conduct. The Swedish Court of Appeal held that principles of freedom of expression protected those speaking on controversial topics from criminal prosecution. A story circulated by Christian Wire Service states that Samuel E. Ericsson, President of Advocates International, attended the court’s January 19 hearing in Sweden . Advocates Europe, the European arm of Advocates International, filed a friend-of-the-court brief pointing out that Pastor Green’s conviction violated Sweden ‘s international treaty obligations to defend religious freedom. In interviews with the Swedish press at the time of the hearing, Ericsson had expressed great concern about the global ramifications of the Green case because Sweden had a reputation for being a strong supporter of human rights. He also explained that Sweden ‘s diplomats would lose standing to object to any country putting pastors in prisons for unpopular sermons.
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